TOKYO - Sony Corp. named Howard Stringer as its chairman today, a decision that marks the first time a foreigner will head a major Japanese electronics firm and comes as the company seeks to boost its faltering core electronics business.
Stringer, vice chairman at Sony and chief executive of Sony Corp. of America, replaces Nobuyuki Idei, who has led the Tokyo-based company for a decade.
The management changes come at a time when fears are growing about Sony’s ability to revive its electronics operations, which have been battered by cheaper competition from Asian rivals.
The decision was made at a board meeting today, subject to shareholders’ approval in June, Sony said in a statement. Kunitake Ando will also step down as Sony president and will be replaced by Ryoji Chubachi, an executive with experience in Sony’s electronics and networking divisions.
‘‘Sony has an unparalleled legacy of boldness, innovation and leadership around the world,’’ Stringer said in a statement.
Idei said the time was ripe to hand over leadership to a new team.